ACTOR Liam Neeson has hosted a star studded dinner in New York that raised nearly $400,000 to help rebuild Belfasts Lyric Theatre. Actors Meryl Streep, Aidan Quinn, Ciaran Hinds, Conleth Hill and singer Brian Kennedy were among the guests at the distinctly Irish event. Celebrity chef Paul Rankin designed a menu featuring traditional Irish fare. Neeson, who is from Ballymena, is patron of the Lyric which was where he began his professional career. Speaking on Gerry Kellys Saturday programme on Radio Ulster, chef Paul Rankin said the event was an out of the world experience. It was held in a very cool penthouse near Broadway in New York. As we were sitting down, you could see Manhattan glittering in the background. It was an out of the world experience... it was just a stunning event. About 50 people from the arts community were invited. BBC